January 19, 2004 12:00 PM


We all waited patiently for the wedding of Trista and Ryan—and it was well worth it. What they have together is so real, and it shows in the way they look in each other’s eyes. Granted, the vows weren’t the greatest-they had helicopters hovering overhead and photographers watching their every move. But they knew they were beginning a new life together, and that was much more important.

Kecia Owens

via e-mail

Perhaps Trista and Ryan really are in love and I certainly wish them the best, but I can’t say they tied the knot with any class or grace.

Cecilia Don

Portland, Ore.

What is this world coming to? ABC shelled out millions of dollars for the overhyped wedding of two people whose only accomplishment is to have met each other on television.

Michele Yulo

Atlanta, Ga.

You call a $4 million wedding lavish; I call it obscene. I kept thinking how many hospital patients could enjoy 30,000 roses (at a cost of $250,000), how many meals a soup kitchen could serve for S15,000 (the cost of the wedding cake) or how many disaster victims could be clothed for $50,000 (the price of Trista’s diamond-encrusted shoes).

Karen A. Shellenhamer

Palmyra, Pa.

Are Ryan and Trista planning to televise the birth of their first child? The ratings could be great if the baby’s conception were televised! Stop already.

Mary Cunningham

Duluth, Ga.

Ryan and Trista make a super couple who really love and care about each other. They deserve the best out of life together.

Lisa Cash

Chehalis, Wash.

Ryan, from one firefighter to another, I’ve got two words for you: high maintenance.

Dennis Darby

Winfield, Kans.


Average Joe should have stuck to its original premise. After the pretty boys were introduced into the mix, you just knew one of them would win.

Shella Cooley

Van Nuys, Calif.

I predict Melana Scantlin and Jason Peoples will last as long as Liza Minnelli and David Gest did, since they have so much in common: makeup and eyebrow plucking.

Mandy Shockey

Conway, Ark.

It should have been called Average Jane Picks Shallow Joe .

Charlotte desCognets

Stow, Mass.


I was moved by your story about Ryan Nielson, the man who’s made himself a designated driver in Salt Lake City. It is so rare these days that we see a parent take responsibility for their children’s actions. While the victim—Ana Paula Bussmann, the pedestrian whom Nielson’s drunk son hit with his car—will have an arduous recovery, I hope it’s a small comfort to her that Mr. Nielson is trying to make sure it doesn’t happen again.

Kimm Martin

Atlanta, Ga.


Nicole Richie‘s birth parents assumed that Lionel Richie and his ex-wife Brenda would be better able to provide for her in the middle of an acrimonious divorce? What exactly have the Richies given Nicole except financial support? While Miss Richie assures the public that her wild reputation is not what she is, her actions-night—clubbing at 14, DUI at 20, arrested for heroin possession at 21—certainly belie that statement. Perhaps the fault lies with the senior Richies: Lionel tells his daughter Nicole, “As long as you’re having fun, that’s all that really matters.” How sad.

Lori M. Hammond

Niskayuna, N.Y.


RCA has mishandled just about everything regarding American Idol’s Justin Guarini. He was poised for superstardom, and I hope he can still attain it despite the damage the record company has inflicted on his career.

Lisa Facenda

Valrico, Fla.

Thank you for the story on Trista and Ryan. It’s refreshing to know that people still fall madly in love and get married. I hope we’ll be privy to their lives long after the honeymoon is over.

Sharon Mather

Spokane, Wash.

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